Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I have to get this off my chest: I love Halloween. I love seeing everyone’s costume and trying to guess what they are. I love Halloween parties. I love candy!

Some of you might even remember my post about Art Meets Fashion where Pretty Macabre showed their spooky collection of costumes. As you can imagine, I was in heaven. Here are some more photos from that night:

Friday, October 25, 2013

London Fashion Week — Spring/Summer 2014

Yeah, I know. You have heard me harp on and on about Paris and New York, but one thing you haven’t heard me talk enough about is London. Actually, London is one of my favorite cities in the world, and I would be lying if I said I didn’t daydream about moving there at least once per day.

From a trip I took to London back in 2011. I talk a little about it in this blog post.

Obviously, one of the reasons I love London (and the British) is because of the fashion. The British fashion scene has a rich, statement-filled history. From bespoke tailoring to punk rock, British fashionistas have it all, and it’s apparent in this year’s spring/summer fashion week.

Here are some of my favorite shows:

Monday, October 14, 2013

Art Meets Fashion — 2013

This weekend, I had the opportunity to go to Art Meets Fashion (AMF), one of the best fashion shows in Utah.

I went with illustrator Ashley Grace. Check her out!

AMF is part art show, part fashion show, and part charity benefit. Artists and designers worked around a theme, ephemera, and presented their work at the show. All proceeds from ticket sales went to the Center for Documentary Expression and Art, a non-profit that uses art to help Utahns understand the state’s cultural past and present.

The event took place over two days, and all the shows were in tents, just like New York Fashion Week. Here are just a few highlights from Saturday’s show...

Friday, October 4, 2013

New York Fashion Week — Spring/Summer 2014

It’s official. All of the major Fashion Week festivities are over. All of the world’s best designers have decided what we’ll be wearing this coming spring and summer.

For me, what’s so exciting about Fashion Week is that I can see how quickly fashion changes from one season to the next. I love seeing what the trends will be in the next season.

Let’s see what New York’s Spring/Summer shows have taught us:

Black and White The runways were packed to the brim with black and white, and many of these looks sported geometric patterns. From preppy to artsy and from soft to structured, here are some of the best looks.

Diane Von Furstenberg Spring/Summer 2014
Photo Credit:

Friday, September 13, 2013

Kickstarting VOX Magazine

New York, Paris, Milan, London, Tokyo. These are the fashion capitals of the world, and real talent wouldn’t lie in boring old Salt Lake, right?

Allow me to enlighten you. Salt Lake City is full of incredible art, fashion and culture. In fact,the artistic talent in Salt Lake has grown so much in the last few years, there is now a thriving art and fashion scene. Every time you turn around there is a huge fashion show or high-fashion soirée.

Now, all we need is a magazine to keep up with this ever-growing creative scene. And here is our chance.

VOX Magazine is on the verge of launching its first issue. Its glossy pages will be chock full of fabulous, local content and that nostalgic new-magazine smell. But there is one hitch: VOX needs your help to print the magazine. The consumer demand for this new magazine is so high that they need funding to meet demand.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Words to Live By: Coco Chanel

Here is a little art project to tide you over until the next blog post:

"A girl should be two things: Classy and fabulous" —Coco Chanel
(And, of course, yourself).

Want to know more about Coco Chanel? Read this blog post.

À plus tard!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Little Red Riding Hood and Big Plans

No! Don’t leave! I can explain.

I need to apologize for not posting for so long. But don’t worry, it’s all for a good reason. I’ve been in school, and I’m starting my final semester for my bachelor’s degree in five days!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Trends I Heart and Trends I Hate: Fringe, Stripes and Bows

It’s been a while since I talked trends. Let’s talk, shall we? First up, lets talk about the trends I love from this summer.

They have been in the loop since December, but they have persisted until now. And I have to tell the world the love that dare not speak its name. Bows. I LOVE bows!

In actuality, this isn’t exactly a secret. Over the last few months I have compulsively stocked up on bow-shaped-anything like a squirrel collecting nuts for winter. Here are some of my favorite pieces from these last two seasons (and yes, they are from Kate Spade):

Skinny Mini Bow Bangle. (My super nice parents got this for a birthday present last year!) Kate Spade $88.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Bikinis: The Modest Truth

A little while ago, this video came to my attention. In this video, Jessica Rey talks about bikinis and modesty.

I’ve seen the link for it on Facebook for about two weeks, and, admittedly, I was a little put off by what I was hearing about it, but I finally watched it. My feelings about this video are incredibly mixed.

My first thought about this video was that she was completely wrong! My second thought? She was completely right! (DON’T STOP READING HERE! Whatever your opinion on this video is, hear me out on this!)

Friday, May 31, 2013

Shopping in Paris

Phew! It's been a long time, but I'm finally over my jet lag, so I can write again! Since it’s been a while since I’ve actually updated you on my journeys, I thought I would give you a brief guide on shopping in Paris.

As with all images—if this is your image, let me know so I can give you credit.

Before you go shopping in another country—or in this case, France—make sure that you understand the cultural differences of that country. Here are a few things about the French and France to keep in mind:

Friday, May 17, 2013

Mademoiselle Chanel

Take an inventory of everything you have in your closet. Do you have t-shirts? Sweaters? A black dress? Skirts shorter than ankle length? Costume jewelry? If you said yes to any of those, it’s all thanks to Coco Chanel. (On the other hand, if you said no to all of those, you must be from the past).

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to go and see the Chanel flagship store on 31 Rue Cambon in Paris. It is not only one of the crown jewels of French fashion, but it is one of the most important brands of all time. “Why?” you ask? Here’s why...

Friday, May 10, 2013

Abercrombie and Something That Rhymes with Fitch

Yeah, I know. You're totally expecting another blog post about Paris. Don’t worry your pretty little head; more tales of Paris fashion are on their way. But right now, I want to talk about a more troubling aspect of fashion: The marketing techniques of Abercrombie and Fitch.

I'm sorry about the scandalous picture. It's the least offensive one I could find.

The reason I’m doing this is because I believe that part of doing fashion well—and yes, it’s something that can be done well—is understanding what it is you are buying, or rather, buying into. When you buy something as intimate and personal as clothing, you are not just buying a yardage of fabric and some thread. You are buying a message. If a company is selling a message that is degrading to you or others, you shouldn’t bother buying it. A company like this doesn’t deserve your money.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ooh la la!

I’m sorry this one is later that scheduled. A lot happened, so I won’t bore you with the details. Here are the highlights:

Since my last post I went to Chartres and Brussels, and I saw some pretty awesome fashion!

First off, I was able to do everything I wanted to do in Brussels. I ate mussels, chocolate, waffles and frites; I saw the Manneken Pis and the Jacques Brel Center; and most importantly, I went into a lace store.

Belgium is very well known for its lace makers, so I had to find some lace while I was there. I went into a very nice lace store and found this Battenberg lace collar. When I get home, I fully intend on attaching it to a wool sheath dress.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The One Where I Go to Paris

Here I am writing from Paris. I feel like Hemingway sans the part about being a genius. Whatever that means…

So far for my first few days I’ve gotten to see a lot of Paris. I’ve been to the Shakespeare and Company bookstore, the Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay and a ton of other places. I still have a lot left to see.

But as this is a fashion blog, I will focus on the lovely fashion I’m seeing in Paris. The Parisians dress just like Ines de la Fressange said they would. They love simplicity, cohesion, tailoring and scarves. Lots and lots of scarves.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Bon Voyage

The day has finally come. I’m on my way to Paris!

If you don’t already know my rule for traveling, it’s that I always try to look as much like a local as possible. So I did some research, pulled some stuff out of my closet, and finally decided what I was going to take with me.

As a general rule I try to pack light. The goal is to have a lot of outfits, without a lot of clothing. I also pack things that are cheap and have no emotional value to me, so when I leave, I don't feel too bad about leaving them at my hotel. This also allows me to have room for presents for my family, friends and (dare I say it?) myself.

But I digress…

Since you all care so much about what I wear (I hope you hear the sarcasm in that), let me show you what I’m bringing with me.

Friday, April 19, 2013

How to Shop

I talk to people all the time who tell me that shopping is a fun, peaceful activity for them. I used to have that feeling until I learned how to sew. Then I turned into my grandmother.

I would go around a store and pick up something I liked then put it down, and announced to whomever I was with, “No! I can make the same thing, but better.” This almost always resulted in me going home empty handed and never actually making the thing I so adamantly proclaimed that I could. Grandma would be proud.

Even though my fashion design training can make for some irritating shopping trips, it has taught me some valuable skills when it comes to shopping. Here are some of my top tips:

Don’t overspend. This one is a no brainer. I can understand wanting to spend $500 on a pair of stilettos. The fact is, past a certain price point, you are paying for a name and not quality. You'll be happier with a less expensive item.

No, really. I get it. It's cute and brightly colored. But, unless you're mega rich, it's probably not worth being $500 poorer.
(Valentino Bow heel. Probably available at Nordstrom for more than you can ever afford)

Friday, April 12, 2013

In the Spotlight: Roxy Marj

A few years ago I went to church at a new building with a congregation consisting of mostly young, single college students. I was 18.1 years old and scared because I was completely alone. I floated around to the requisite meetings not knowing what to do or whom I should talk to when, out of the blue, a girl started to talk to me. In our conversation I found out that she was living my dream life. She studied fashion design at Parsons, The New School for Design; she lived in New York for a few years; and she was living the bohemian lifestyle of a freelance illustrator.

She was one of the coolest, nicest people I’ve ever met. She ended up being a personal hero and a big influence in my life.

This choice lady’s name is Roxy. She is a local designer and illustrator operating under the name Roxy Marj, and besides the reasons above, there are many reasons why I love her and her work. Here are some of the main reasons:

Her work is designed for the child that survived when she became an adult. Every Roxy Marj item has the playful adult in mind. Yes, even if it was made for children! She makes a myriad of things from blankets to coloring posters for children, but I can’t help but want them for myself.

Kids coloring posters. Now your kids can color on the wall and inflict less property damage.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Why We Should All Burn Our Victoria's Secret Bras

This may be a departure from what I normally talk about, but I’ve held my tongue long enough. My big secret is I hate Victoria’s Secret.

I hate them for many of reasons. Their products are really low quality and way too expensive. I can never find a bra that doesn’t have more padding than bra. Their sales girls won’t help you find a thing, but are so eager to get your address, so they can send you catalogs for the rest of your life. If you're a larger lass, you can count on them not having your size. And in all of my years of going there they have never once fit me in the correct size bra. Seriously—when I was finally fit in the correct size at a department store, I was shocked to find that these iron-clad, rib-crunching contraptions could be comfortable.
It's not the 1800's. Underwear can be comfortable now.

Really, the list can go on and on for a long time, but, surprisingly, none of these is the reason why I don’t buy from them anymore. If there was one thing that changed my mind about VS, it was this article by Beauty Redefined, a non-profit run by two PhD candidates in Salt Lake City who study the way the media affects body-image.

Friday, March 29, 2013

You've Got Mail

I don’t have a lot to write today because I’m gearing up for finals before I go to Paris. But I thought I would write something anyways…

(By the way, sorry about the You've Got Mail reference. I couldn't help it. People always tell me that my name reminds them of Kathleen Kelly, and I love that movie with a passion).

I’ve been taking an advertising class this semester, and I had a group project for a direct mail piece. You know. Those annoying post cards you get in the mail that you never read—except you would totally read mine. Just sayin'.

The goal of the assignment was to find a willing client and make a direct mail piece that they could realistically send out in order to get more people to their store or organization. My group chose my friend Amy, who owns fine fabric store in Salt Lake—Yellow Bird Fabrics.

Put a bird on it!
But ignore the address. They are now at 988 East.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Trends I Heart and Trends I Hate: Neon and Sustainable Fashion

I’m probably not what you would call “trendy”. I tend to err on the side of classic, but this does not mean that I don’t love trends. After a great evening of walking around Salt Lake City’s marvelous City Creek Mall, I can’t restrain myself from talking about my favorite trends.

With no further delay here is Trends I Heart and Trends I Hate.

Trend I heart: Neon

When I was in the eighth grade, my language arts teacher told my class to write a letter to ourselves  five years later (that would be my nineteen year-old self). Needless to say, I was embarrassed about the things I actually liked back in 2004, however, I was taken by something I wrote. It went something like this:

“Dearest Kathleen,

You are probably reading this while wearing a loud shirt and spandex pants, and you probably think you are really cool…”

Oh my hell… I was doing just that...

Friday, March 15, 2013

A Bright Future

As many of you might know, I studied fashion design for a while. During the fall semester 2011, I was working on a seven-piece collection for school, but I was unable to finish it because I was working and taking classes at two different schools—full time. Recently, however, I unearthed my notebook full of designs for the collection, and I thought I would share them with you.

Just to give you some context, at the time I was working on a collection for the spring fashion show at Salt Lake Community College. I went there after high school to study general education so I could transfer somewhere else later, but I ended up getting sucked into the fashion design classes. By the time I finally transferred to Westminster College, I almost had enough credits to graduate with an associate’s degree in Fashion design.

Each year the spring fashion show has a theme that everyone must follow, and this year’s was “speed”. I was really confused and panicked at first (classic Kathleen). It sounded way too esoteric to work. Then it just made me think I would have to end up making clothing for raves with special built-in compartments for meth. Eventually, I started listening to my professor as she explained that the Utah Museum of Fine Arts was installing an exhibit—at the same time the fashion show was going on—with a bunch of beautifully designed cars called Speed. Suddenly, things started to click.

Jaguar XK–SS from the Speed home page.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

On a Quest to be "Parisian Chic"

Travelling is one of my absolute favorite things to do, and I travel out of the country a lot. I will admit, however, that I actually hate the travelling part of travelling. I hate packing. I hate sitting on planes. I hate getting strip-searched at the airport. My saving grace is taking sleeping pills, so I don’t have to be conscious on the plane.

Story of my life...

When you travel as frequently as I do, you tend to pick up tricks on how to make the process of getting to (and being at your destination) easier. Things like what shoes you should wear to the airport and how to live off of a small suitcase. My biggest travel trick, however, is to try not to look like a tourist.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Golden Rules of Fashion

At a local nail salon that my sisters and I frequent, one of the ladies that works there has given us nicknames. Mine is “Fashion.” The reason for that might be clear if you are reading this blog, but most people who know me in real life know that this is because I studied fashion design for a few years. (I want to continue studying fashion design, but I am taking the scenic route right now).

A lot of my friends who know this ask me for my opinion on what they are wearing or what they should wear, but I tend to be much more of, to borrow a linguistic term, a descriptivist when it comes to fashion. I don’t like to tell people what to do. Rules like "Thou shalt never match your bag and shoes!" or "Thou shalt never wear black to a wedding!" are just plain silly. Someone somewhere has broken these rules and has done so beautifully.

I have my personal opinions about some rules like this. For instance, I don’t like to match my eye shadow color to my shirt, but I can respect it when someone else can pull it off. In my world, there are only three simple rules of fashion that must be followed.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Best- and Worst-Dressed: The Academy Awards

Before I start, let me just say that the movies are made of pure magic. I love movies, and I can never get enough of the Oscars. I don’t know what I would be like if I were a sports fan, but I assume I would act like I do when I am watching the Oscars—yelling,  crying and telling the television what's what.

As far as my expectations of the red carpet show, I tend to set the bar pretty high. This show is not like the Grammys in the sense that most people can get away with anything simply based on the virtue that they are a musician or a personality, so I expect people to be wearing things to the Oscars that wow rather than shock. I was pleasantly surprised with the turnout this year.

Let’s start with the ladies…

Jennifer Lawrence is one of the most talented new actresses I have seen in a long time. Not only that, she is funny, down-to-earth, and pretty danged stylish. Also, the inner-feminist in me trying to get out wants to say I love that she tends to be in movies that pass the Bechdel Test and/or have a purposeful female character.

She came pretty close to being one of my best-dressed winners at the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards, but she played it a little too safe for my taste. This Gown by Dior, however, blew me away. It is simple, yet dramatic, and incredibly tasteful. Whether or not it made her fall on her face, it was an awesome dress.

Image courtesy of

Oh... And if you are wondering why I like her so much, here is a video of her gracefully answering really lame questions about her well-deserved award for Silver Linings Playbook.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Best and Worst Dressed: Grammys 2013

Music is not really my forte. Don’t get me wrong, I like music, but I am more likely to be able to successfully explain the plot and meaning of Inception to someone than something like dub step—whatever that is. Actually, if you knew how many times my friends have had to explain to me what Skrillex and Gangham Style are, you would probably laugh. And I still don’t understand either of those things.

That being said, I don’t really watch the Grammys, but I do love to pay attention to the fashion. This show is a different kind of beast because it is easier to break the rules on what one wears to an awards show. You will see someone dressed up in Dior Haute Couture and next you see someone in jeans and a shredded t-shirt. It is a wonderous thing to behold.

Here are my pick for women’s best-dressed:

Typically, I have more conservative taste when it comes to clothing, but Rihanna’s dress by Alaïa blew me away.

Friday, February 8, 2013

SAG Awards 2013: Best and Worst Dressed

Yep... I know. This blog post is a bit late. Nonetheless, it’s awards season, and I can’t not write about the red carpet. (I’ll spare you by not writing a blog about the Golden Globes; there is nothing exciting to say about it anyways).

Every awards season, there is one show that is just horribly styled—either because the clothing is boring or just plain bad—and I thought that the storm had passed after the Golden Globes, but I was overwhelmingly underwhelmed with the Screen Actor's Guild award show as well. I did find a few gems, though.

First, the ladies best-dressed category:

Marion Cotillard’s style tends to be controversial—i.e. the fish dress she wore to the Oscars in 2007 (which I loved by the way). I can also see how this one by Dior Haute Couture might not be a favorite, but it is a clear winner for me.

Image courtesy of

Monday, January 28, 2013

It's Cold. Get a Coat!

For those of you who do not live in Utah, you may not know how cold it is here. We describe ourselves as having “the best snow on earth” for a reason, but this year it has gotten out of control. We have had more than enough snow to keep us out of a drought, and then some. As I am writing this, my car is sitting in a snowbank outside my house like a beached whale. Since I can’t go anywhere right now, what better thing is there to do than write about outerwear?

I have always loved outerwear. If you take a glance at my Pinterest page you will see that it's overrun with pictures of coats and sweaters. In fact, if you know me personally, you will know that I have more coats than sense. So, with no further ado, here are my favorite coats from the Fall/Winter  2012 season.

First up, a men’s look from Armani:

Image courtesy of

Friday, January 11, 2013

Hello, World!

Finally. Yes, finally.

I have always wanted to start a fashion/design blog (actually, I have in the past, but it was UNBELIEVABLY lame) and this year is the year I am going to do it (don't judge me like that; I really will this time).

Now to introductions. My name is Kathleen, and I am currently a student in Salt Lake City. I used to study fashion design, but now I am getting a degree in arts administration. I still want to go into fashion design, but sometimes life just throws you a curve. Nonetheless, I love art, fashion, design, travelling and writing.

Tune in for more.

Happy (Belated) New Year.

I'm in the gold skirt (HI!), Jenna is wearing the yellow dress I made.